On August 14 and 15… 828 For Hajj

 

The Deputy Minister of Social Welfare Gender and Children’s Affairs, Mr. Mahamed Haji Kella has disclosed that 828 Sierra Leoneans are set for this year’s pilgrimage to the Holy Land of Mecca, Saudi Arabia for the Hajj ceremony on the 14th and 15th of August this year.

The Deputy Minister said that on the 12th and 13th of August, all pilgrims will converge at the Atlantic Hall for final orientation and after that they will be given a farewell speech by President Julius Maada Bio before leaving the shores on Sierra Leone for the Holy Land.

He furthered that the pilgrims will be airlifted to Mecca by Saudi Air Flight on the 14th and 15th of August. The Hajj Committee, he disclosed, consists of thirty Sierra Leoneans who, he said, are working to ensure that the process goes on smoothly.

He said the President and the Office of First Lady have offered scholarships for the trip which entails airfare, feeding and logging, but that is no pocket money provided for intended pilgrims as, according to him, the government did not budget for that. He further disclosed that Qatar has also provided scholarship that covers the welfare of the pilgrims. He said before government offers scholarship it first screens candidates to check for age and also ensure that he or she is a first time pilgrim.

According to him, the official quota from Saudi Arabia for Sierra Leonean pilgrims is 800 but that this time the government was able to negotiate for another 28 individuals.